ICICI bank launches contactless cards in India

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India’s ICICI bank has launched the country’s first contactless credit and debit cards in Gurgaon, Hyderabad and Mumbai.

The launch will allow banking customers using ICICI’s Coral Contactless Credit Card and Expressions Wave Debit Card to tap-to-pay at participating retailers. Both the contactless credit and debit cards can still be used as regular cards at all MasterCard/Visa enabled merchant terminals, even those which are not enabled for contactless transactions

Over 1,200 EDC machines capable of accepting contactless payments have been set-up across select merchants in Gurgaon, Hyderabad and Mumbai such as quick service restaurants, coffee shops, shopping marts and fuel stations. The bank to extend this facility to other cities as well, ICICI said in a statement.

The RBI is also considering easing two-factor authentication requirement for small value transactions up to Rs. 3,000.

“We expect this to be a big game changer in the Indian payment industry,” said Rajiv Sabharwal, executive director at ICICI Bank, “The key advantages of these cards are speed and security. Faster transactions will add momentum to high value payments. At the same time, they will also herald a shift from low value cash payments to cards thereby bringing payments in quick service restaurants and shopping marts under the formal channel. The level of security is higher since the card doesn’t leave the customer during the transaction process.”

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